Why You Should Commit to Making Your Happiness a Habit

This Wednesday marks International Day of Happiness, and the theme for this year’s celebration is “Happier Together.” The idea is that we should focus on our commonalities, instead of the things that divide us.

The Happiness Day website proclaims: “Everyone wants to be happy—and life is happier when we’re together.” And that has gotten me thinking.

We really do ALL want to be happy. And our happiness matters. It’s not selfish to want happiness for yourself.

Because happy people are happy parents … they are happy partners and spouses … happy people have happy children.

That’s truly being “happier together”!

We have to get rid of the stigma that wanting and creating happiness in our lives is somehow frivolous. And we definitely need to ditch the mistaken idea that we aren’t deserving of happiness.

So, in honor of International Happiness Day, I want to help you get your happy back! We’re gonna start by committing to make happiness a habit. And because I practice what I preach, I’m sharing exactly how I take responsibility for my happiness daily.

Habit 1: Move Your Body

I move my body every. Single. Day. I run three days a week for a total of 30 miles. I spin twice a week. I take my dogs for a daily walk. And guess what? I ENJOY every one of these activities, and I’m even happier when I complete them.

So find your own movement. Maybe it’s exercise or walking the dog. Or maybe it’s an impromptu dance party with your kids. Just find something that makes you move. Your body—and mind—will thank you!

Habit 2: Gratitude

I keep a gratitude journal, and I strive to write a list of 10 things I’m thankful for in it each day. This helps me train my brain to be on the lookout for all that’s right in my world. (I admit this is successful about 90% of the time; I’m still working on that other 10%!)

Does a journal sound like too much work? A list of 10 things too long? Start with one thing you’re thankful for each day, and jot it on a Post-It. The key is to START!

Habit 3: Random Acts of Kindness

This habit can be practiced anytime, anywhere. I compliment the hotel concierge on her helpfulness, or the lady next to me at Walmart with the gorgeous thick hair (yes, I have hair envy). Sometimes I send an unprompted text to a friend just to let them know they’re important to me.

This is possibly the easiest habit to practice. There’s no one way to do it, and the acts can be big or small. So get your kindness on!

Habit #4: Meditation

Full disclosure: I’ve been slacking at meditation lately. This should be a daily happening—but I’ve been stalling out at two times a week. And lawd knows, Kim Strobel needs some meditation in her life! It’s a welcome break from the busy-ness and stress.  

So … let’s agree to work on this meditation thing together. I promise to rev up my Ananda app again. And I want you take a look at your calendar and carve out a few moments each day that are just for you to sit, breathe, listen to yourself.

Habit #5: Social Connections

I’m a run-run-run kind of person. So, it’s nice to sit quietly with my husband in our dining room over a cup of tea. Or enjoy a movie night with my son. Or gather my best girlfriends for Wine Down Wednesday. These connections keep me sane!

Making time for people you care about is definitely the most fun habit—but it’s also the one that we can struggle the most with. So from time to time, shut out the rest of the world, and focus your time and energy on strengthening your most important relationships.

These are the exact habits I practice … and I can truly say, I’m pretty darn happy most of the time!

Creating happiness for yourself is not selfish. In fact, when we get in alignment with how our souls truly want to shine, we allow ourselves to show up as the best damn version of ourselves every single day. And that benefits everyone!

SHARE YOUR HAPPY: In the spirit of being “happier together,” jump into the comments section and share your own tips and secrets for injecting joy into your daily life!